Published: B Livadas & Coutsicos
Published: Cairo Postcard Trust
Published: B Livadas & Coutsicos
Published: Cairo Postcard Trust
Google Street View (approximately)
Ludgate Hill is a hill in the City of London, near the old Ludgate, a gate to the City that was taken down, with its attached gaol, in 1760. It is the site of St. Paul’s Cathedral, traditionally said to have been the site of a Roman temple of the goddess Diana. It is one of the three ancient hills of London, the others being Tower Hill and Cornhill. The highest point is just north of St. Paul’s, at 17.6 metres (58 ft) above sea level. Ludgate Hill is also the name of a street which runs between St. Paul’s Churchyard and Ludgate Circus (built in 1864), from where it becomes Fleet Street. It was formerly a much narrower street called Ludgate Street.
Many small alleys on Ludgate Hill were swept away in the late 1860s to build Ludgate Hill railway station between Water Lane and New Bridge Street, a station of the London, Chatham and Dover Railway. It was closed in 1923 and the railway bridge and viaduct between Holborn Viaduct and Blackfriars stations was demolished in 1990 to enable the construction of the City Thameslink railway station in a tunnel. This also involved the regrading of the slope of Ludgate Hill at the junction.
Of all the eyesores of modern London, surely the most hideous is the Ludgate Hill Viaduct— that enormous flat iron that lies across the chest of Ludgate Hill like a bar of metal on the breast of a wretch in a torture-chamber. Let us hope that a time will come when all designs for City improvements will be compelled to endure the scrutiny and win the approval of a committee of taste. The useful and the beautiful must not for ever be divorced. The railway bridge lies flat across the street, only eighteen feet above the roadway, and is a miracle of clumsy and stubborn ugliness, entirely spoiling the approach to one of the finest buildings in London. The five girders of wrought iron cross the street, here only forty-two feet wide, and the span is sixty feet, in order to allow of future enlargement of the street. Absurd lattice-work, decorative brackets, bronze armorial medallions, and gas lanterns and standards, form a combination that only the unsettled and imitative art of the ruthless nineteenth century could have put together.
Think of what the Egyptians in the times of the Pharaohs did with granite! and observe what we Englishmen of the present day do with iron. Observe this vulgar daubing of brown paint and barbaric gilding, and think of what the Moors did with colour in the courts of the Alhambra! A viaduct was necessary, we allow, but such a viaduct even the architect of the National Gallery would have shuddered at. The difficulties, we however allow, were great. The London, Chatham, and Dover, eager for dividends, was bent on wedding the Metropolitan Railway near Smithfield; but how could the hands of the affianced couple be joined? If there was no viaduct, there must be a tunnel. Now, the bank of the river being a very short distance from Smithfield, a very steep and dangerous gradient would have been required to effect the junction. Moreover, had the line been carried under Ludgate Hill, there must have been a slight detour to ease the ascent, the cost of which detour would have been enormous. The tunnel proposed would have involved the destruction of a few trifles —such, for instance, as Apothecaries’ Hall, the churchyard adjoining, the Times printing office— besides doing injury to the foundations of St. Martin’s Church, the Old Bailey Sessions House, and Newgate. Moreover, no station would have been possible between the Thames and Smithfield. The puzzled inhabitants, therefore, ended in despair by giving evidence in favour of the viaduct. The stolid hammermen went to work, and the iron nightmare was set up in all its Babylonian hideousness.
Old and New London: Volume 1. (1878)
Ludgate Hill— The appearance of this, the western approach to St. Paul’s, has been completely marred by the railway bridge of the London, Chatham, and Dover Railway, which crosses it at its lower end, and destroys the view from Farringdon-circus at its foot. Ludgate-hill is steep, and in slippery weather horses with heavy waggons have serious difficulty in getting up it, though the difficulty and danger have been much lessened by the laying down of the new wood pavement. Some houses recently built near the foot of the hill, on the south side have been thrown back some feet: and it is hoped that eventually the improvement will be carried out throughout the whole length of the street. From Ludgate-hill only can a good view be obtained of the grand western façade of St. Paul’s cathedral, a view that has been greatly improved by the clearing away of the iron railings, so leaving the west front open to Ludgate-hill. Few improvements in a small way have been as valuable and effective as this.
Victorian London (Charles Dickens (Jr.), Dickens’s Dictionary of London, 1879)
The Westgate is a medieval gatehouse in Canterbury, Kent, England. This 60-foot (18 m) high western gate of the city wall is the largest surviving city gate in England. Built of Kentish ragstone around 1379, it is the last survivor of Canterbury’s seven medieval gates, still well-preserved and one of the city’s most distinctive landmarks.
The largest and arguably the finest of the country’s surviving medieval gateways was built during the 100 Years’ War to defend Canterbury from foreign incursion, and to demonstrate the city’s wealth and importance. The 60-foot (18m) stronghold did not stand alone, as it does now, but was approached over a drawbridge and flanked by impressive walls. Time passed, the military threat lessened, and Westgate was converted into the city gaol. This function, too, came to an end; after a brief period as an archive, it became a museum at the start of the 20th century. Brought back into active service in both World Wars, it played a crucial role in the city’s air defences.
One Pound Lane
To return again to the High street on the northern side of which opposite to St Margaret s street is a narrow lane called Mercery lane anciently Le Mercerie no doubt from that trade having been principally carried forward in it Before the time of the great rebellion there was a colonade on each side of it like that formerly on London Bridge The houses in it are the most ancient of any in the city each story projecting upwards so as almost to meet at the top There has however been a considerable improvement in this lane like the rest of the city many houses have been new fronted The south west corner of it is the site of one of those ancient inns which Chaucer mentions as being frequented by the pilgrims in his time and the inner part of the adjoining premises where every information can be obtained for the stranger and traveller gives some idea still of the manner in which these sort of receptacles for travellers were built This lane leads to the entrance into the precincts of the Cathedral the principal gate of which is opposite to it
“Canterbury Guide”, Henry Ward, 1843, p 24
One of the most famous of all hostelries used to be the “Chequers of the Hope” at the angle of Mercery Lane with the main street, the exact corner where the crowd of pilgrims that had entered by the West Gate turned aside to gain Prior Goldstone’s entrance to the cathedral precincts. But, alas! though the name remains, the building was almost entirely destroyed by fire in 1865. . . . Mercery Lane the name (like that of Butchery Lane, the next narrow turning to the cathedral) reminding us of the days when all of one trade congregated together has a peculiar charm from its very narrowness and lack of straight lines, as well as from the projecting character of most of the houses, several of which are certainly of fourteenth-century building, though altered much in Tudor, Elizabethan, or Stuart times.
“Canterbury, a historical and topographical account of the city”, J. Charles Cox, 1905, pp 280-1
Google Street View
(Almost none of the buildings are but the same but the building with the verandah on the right side of postcard is the former Imperial Hotel, the three-storey white building on the right side of the street view. Similar view here.
The Westgate is one of two surviving fortified gateways in Winchester, England (the other is Kingsgate). The earliest surviving fabric is of Anglo-Saxon character. The gate was rebuilt in the 12th century and modified in the 13th and late 14th centuries, the latter including a portcullis in the western façade and two inverted-keyhole gunports (for use with hand-held cannon), the earliest in the country. The gate was in use until 1959 when the High Street was routed around it.
Ismailia was founded in 1863, during the construction of the Suez Canal, by Khedive Ismail the Magnificent, after whom the city is named. Following the Battle of Kafr-el-Dawwar in 1882 the British established a base there. The head office of the Suez Canal Authority is located in Ismailia at the shore of Lake Timsah. It has a large number of buildings dating from British and French involvement with the Canal. Most of these buildings are currently used by Canal employees and officials.